These family crests (In Japanese, KAMON) are called 'Matsu Mon' in JAPAN.
|Three-tiered pine Left-leaning in circle||Three-tiered pine Right-leaning in circle||Three-tiered pine Left-leaning with rough branches in circle||Three pines||Three pines inward-facing|
|Pine, bamboo and ume||Pine cone with needles||Snow-covered three-tiered pine in rice cake||Folded pine needle in circle|
These evergreens have been used in ritual religious ceremonies and considered auspicious since ancient times. Kadomatsu (New Year's decorations made of pine branches) are still displayed at the gates and entryways of Japanese homes at New Year's time. Since the Heian Period, pine patterns have been used on oxcarts and the like; later, they were made into family crests. (From 'Family Crests of Japan' ICG Muse, Inc.2001)